Asian Property Investors Target Aussie Homes

asian investors aussie homes

Foreign investment into Australia is at an all-time high, with wealthy Asian buyers especially interested in splashing their cash on Australian property. In fact, Chinese buyers are the largest foreign buyers of real estate in Australia. The effect can be seen all up and down the East Coast and beyond, with real estate agents with strong Asian connections able to deliver much higher prices for their vendors.

The property rush began in the post-Covid days, when Australia became a focal point for cross-border transaction from wealthy buyers based in Asia. Just how much were they buying? Let’s take a look at some stats from the Foreign investment Review Board. 

Asian Buyers by the Numbers

Let’s take a look at some powerful insights of foreign purchases of property in Australia post-Covid:

  • From 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2023 there were 5,360 residential real estate purchases with a level of foreign ownership. The total value of these purchase transactions was $4.9 billion. That;’s just in one financial year. 
  • Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland represented 74.9% of all foreign purchase transactions during this time.
  • New dwellings and vacant land represented 66% of these transactions. 
  • Chinese buyers made up for the largest proportion of sales, with a considerable lead over other investing countries like UK, Hong Kong and Nepal. 

Government Introduces Legislation

Worried that foreign investment was unnaturally inflating house prices, in February 2024 the government introduced a raft of legislation in an effort to free up housing stock for Australian residents and channel foreign investments into new builds. 

These laws would triple the fees for a foreign investor to buy a property here if it was an existing dwelling. Fees stand at $4,200 for new buildings or vacant land under $75,000, upwards to more than $100,000 for those valued at more than $5-million. This would make the corresponding fees for existing dwellings $12,600 and $338,600.

Vacancy fees, which are generally mirror the application fees above, would also be doubled. These would apply when a property is not occupied for a period of six months. In other words, the government wants the property to be sued, not sitting vacant and contributing to the housing crisis. 

How Has This Affected The Current Situation?

As the situation currently stands, Australia is still the most sought-after destination for Asian buyers to spend their money, surpassing even the US and Canada. An Asia-Pacific Cross-Border Residential Property Buying Report from real estate technology firm Juwai IQI showed the number of buyer inquiries here places it at the top of the interest pile for not just China, but many other Asian nations too. The ‘big four’ of these are mainland China, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand. 

Why is Demand from Asian Buyers Still So High? 

Migration to Australia has reached record high levels since Covid, with 547,200 being the net positive migration figure for the year 2023. Many of these people were of Asian origin, coming to our shores for work, permanent migration or to pursue international study. There are big Asian communities already in Australia, who obviously still have ties to their home countries. 

These strong links make Australia a very attractive place to buy real estate for Asian buyers. They’re not just buying it for investment purposes, they’re buying it to live in, to have a base while they study or a place for their relatives to live in. Their demand is obviously buoyed by the fact that property in Australia continues to increase in value, making it a very sound investment option. 

What Does This Mean for Property Sellers? 

If you list your property now, you’re going to get foreign intertest in it. In particular from Asian buyers. You want to be in a position whereby your home is getting noticed by the right Asian buyers, and lots of them. The more people who see it and want it, the more competition and the higher the chance you’ll get the price you want for your property. 

To do this, you need to enlist the help of a real estate agent who can leverage the foreign interest correctly. At The Henry Wong Team® we have built up a massive network of referral partners, professionals and colleagues across Australia and overseas. It includes very strong ties with wealthy home buyers in China and other parts of Asia. 

These are buyers who we know, and who trust us. When we list a home, they pay attention. We’d love to introduce your property to our foreign buyer networks. Just get in touch to get the ball rolling, or if you have any questions you can reach Henry on 0412 471 588.